Opera Memphis to bring fables to life

Sing with the animals
What: Opera Memphis' “Aesop's Fables”
When: 7 p.m. Tuesday
Where: Link Centre, Tupelo
Tickets: Free, but canned goods for food pantry will be accepted
Info: (662) 844-2332, 255-1593

BY M. SCOTT MORRIS
Daily Journal

TUPELO – Fun is fun, no matter how it's delivered.

Members of Fortnightly Musicale invited Opera Memphis to Tupelo, so youngsters and adults can sample a unique and entertaining art form.

“Opera isn't like rock 'n' roll or rhythm and blues,” said Jo Miller Orr, program coordinator with Fortnightly Musicale. “It's not like TV or any other live performance.”

On Tuesday, scenes from “Aesop's Fables” will be presented for students throughout Tupelo. The complete show will be staged during a free community performance at 7 p.m. Tuesday, and everyone is invited.

“It is going to be appealing to all age groups,” Orr said. “It is funny, entertaining and very engaging to the children.”

Tortoise, hare

Erica Cochran, a 25-year-old soprano with Opera Memphis, said the story of the tortoise and the hare has been a particular favorite of young audiences.

“It always gets a big reaction because that's the one everyone knows,” Cochran said.

The show will include the story of the ant who dutifully collects food for the winter, while the cricket wastes away his time.

The performers also will share the story of an easily flattered crow and a cheese-stealing fox.

“We dress all in black except for our masks,” said Cochran, who plays a mouse and an ant. “The masks are made of leather and they're all handmade. They're pretty spectacular.”

The performers also will use their bodies and voices to bring the animals to life. The stories will be told with a mixture of singing and acting.

“This is an opportunity to see an opera performed in a way different than they might see on a main stage,” Cochran said. “It's a chance to have some fun and find out what an opera is.”

Contact M. Scott Morris at 678-1589 or scott.morris@djournal.com